Warning All Incoming Freshman

If you took athletics seriously at a young age, odds are that you probably envisioned yourself playing sports at the collegiate level. Unfortunately not just anyone can play at that level. If you are lucky enough to get that opportunity you may feel overwhelmed.

Playing sports in high school is a completely different experience than college. So if you are a college freshman playing a sport, you will most likely think it is a new life. The days of practicing a couple times a week are gone. Playing pranks and skipping practice are actions that are not tolerated at the college level. Playing sports is no longer something you do in your free time; it is a major aspect of your life.

Deirdre Maybury played softball at Saint Thomas Aquinas College in Sparkill, New York. She, like many others, quickly learned just how serious collegiate athletics are.

“I remember our first day of practice when my teammate Stephanie and I were joking around as we got the equipment ready. Our coach saw us laughing as we brought out the batting gear and immediately forced us to run. We learned pretty fast that we had to always be serious on the field,” said Maybury.

Maybury isn’t the first athlete to be punished for horseplay and she won’t be the last. Coaches at this level don’t want to come across as tyrants but they need to ensure their players are as serious about the game as they are. People don’t realize that many coaches are trying to climb the ranks and improve their careers. Coaching is their job and they need to take it seriously.

“I think when your first enter college you still have the mindset of a kid. I mean you’re 17, or 18 but you don’t realize the seriousness of the game. But that changes pretty quickly if you go through what I did,” Maybury joked.

While it may be a difficult transition from high school to college, these players are still doing what they love. While it may be a demanding and serious commitment it’s not going to stop athletes from playing.

Kathleen Stack is a junior in high school who has heard plenty in regards to the strenuous life of a college athlete. She doesn’t care about how much time she will have to dedicate to soccer as long as she gets to see the field.

“I have some friends that complain about how much they have to practice or work out and I’m just like why are you doing it if you aren’t enjoying yourself? I don’t think I could ever complain about being on a college soccer team. I would be doing what I love at a level not many get to say they were a part of,” said Stack.

Stack has been playing soccer since she was five years old. It is not hard to see why she loves the game so much. She does raise some great points as well. Why bother playing if you aren’t happy?

High school athletes BEWARE. College athletics is going to be a serious commitment. If you are ready to continue playing, you must be ready to treat it like a job. If you can do that, you will be able to say you did something that very few people get to say. Good luck!

The Hectic Life of a Student Athlete

Being an athlete in college is no easy task. Student athletes are expected to go to practice, play frequent games and work out in the weight room on off days all while maintaining at least a passing grade point average in school. While a college athlete’s life may seem like all fun and games it is truly a life filled with labor.

Many people don’t realize the number of hours that student athletes have to dedicate to their sport. While they are doing what they love, their sport is more a job than it is a game.

Matthew Brembs is a student athlete who deals with the struggle of juggling classwork with baseball. While playing for Huntingdon College, Brembs keeps a 3.3 GPA. He believes the rigorous schedule actually keeps him on the right path.

“If I’m not practicing or working out, I’m most likely in the library. I don’t have much time to spare so I try to always make the most of it,” Brembs said. “Because I’m so busy, I really don’t have time to mess around. If I did, I think I would find it harder to focus on the important things.”

Colleges have taken steps to ensure that student athletes are not forgetting about their academics. Many institutions have required coaches to implant study hall sessions so that athletes don’t forget to be students.

“Study hall definitely helps getting schoolwork done, but it’s not enough if you want to be a successful student. One problem is that you can be exhausted after games and you really don’t want to do anything at all, let alone read about economics,” explained Brembs.

Unfortunately for Brembs and all student athletes, studying after a long day is exactly the kind of action that needs to be taken in order to stay on top of their books. However, if they are able to manage both their sport and academics, then surely they can go on to succeed anywhere after college.

How to Eat Your Way to a Healthy Body

Maintaining your body is crucial for all athletes. Many athletes spend hours working out and running while trying to achieve a strong body. What they may not know is that a proper diet can separate their physique from the rest.

Braulio Santana is a personal trainer who dedicates a lot of his time to eating properly.

“People think that going to the gym everyday is enough to get the body that they are trying to achieve. Obviously working out is very important but what you put into your body has a lot to do with the shape it takes.”

Santana believes that people are eating foods with too many calories and drinks that have too much sugar.

“I have had people come up to me complaining they can’t lose weight while they’re holding a bottle of Mountain Dew. If you want to lose weight, you need to cut out those unnecessary fats and sugars.”

Santana suggests that athletes should try to eat foods with good sources of protein such as chicken and peanut butter. These foods will help build muscle and provide good energy for the body.

“If you are an athlete and you spend hours in the gym but don’t get the proper nutrition, then its almost like you didn’t even workout. Your body needs those nutrients and vitamins to help your muscles get stronger.”

Most sports require a lot of endurance and having a slim body helps an athlete stay in the game longer. Avoiding foods that will only make you gain weight is key to developing a superior body.

“My first recommendation would be to try smaller portions of whatever you normally eat and only drink water. Many people have a hard time going to a strict diet straight away so it’s good to try and work towards that goal instead of jumping straight in.”

You can find great tips for dieting here. http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/nutrition-tips-athletes